Study Guide

Heart of a Samurai Chapter 9

By Margi Preus

Chapter 9

Seven Breaths

  • The Captain gets an invitation to his friend's house in Hawai'i, and he decides to extend it to Manjiro and the rest of the Japanese guys.
  • Once they get to Dr. Judd's house, Manjiro can't help being curious about all the stuff around his house, like foreign coins and a smoking pipe.
  • Turns out Dr. Judd collects this stuff from guys like Manjiro, a.k.a. dudes stranded and trying to get back to their home country.
  • He takes out a map and the Japanese fishermen are in awe of what their country looks like.
  • They think it looks so tiny, when they thought it was the hugest, most important place.
  • The Captain makes a comment about how the Japanese may not have the best perspective on their country given how closed off the country is. Yep—he just dissed them.
  • But they don't understand the Captain since he's speaking in English.
  • Manjiro hears him, though, and decides not to translate.
  • Instead, he goes on and views his friends as narrow-minded about Japan; he wants to know all about the world, which the map allows him to see.
  • And which the Captain is willing to show him.
  • He remembers what his mother told him: A decision should be made in the space of seven breaths.
  • So he takes seven breaths and decides: It's time to go to America.